The outsoles of the Asics Gel Fujitrabuco 6 is standard fare in the world of trail shoes
. Its layout of hard and soft rubber with several lugs added along the forefoot and arch to help grip on difficult
surfaces is a feature you can also find on the majority of competing products. In this one respect Asics doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but since the layout they chose for this outsole is time-tested and accepted by their customers, why fix something that isn’t broken? It’s perfectly serviceable and performs admirably, but won’t do anything that will blow you away.
The most significant features that sell these trail shoes and set them apart from the others can be found here, in the midsole. Proprietary lightweight material, branded as “Solyte” by the manufacturer, helps to provide the thickness and cushioning
expected of trail shoes while keeping the weight surprisingly low. While this can result in a diminished level of stability or support
, these potential setbacks are prevented with the gel technology that gives these shoes their namesake. Strategically placed gel pockets along the back and middle of the midsole provide additional shock absorption
and energy efficiency which may otherwise be lost thanks to the limitations of the lighter material.
The upper portion of these Asics
trail shoes is intended for protection and comfort, with many interesting design choices that reflect those intentions. For example, the mesh material used to provide airflow is also geared towards protecting your feet from exposure to gravel
, especially near the tongue. A “lace garage” can be used to tuck away tied shoelaces in order to prevent untying and fraying from the elements. A sock liner helps to provide a snug fit on your foot while also wicking away any excess moisture that may accumulate from either sweat or inclement weather. As a result, this is one of the most impressive uppers you can find on a pair of trail shoes.
This is something that casual runners will have the most difficult time adjusting to. Trail shoes are known for having a heavier weight in service of protection, comfort, and support on rough surfaces. This same tradeoff is present in the Gel Fujitrabuco 6, with a total weight of approximately 11 ounces. Something to consider when comprehending this weight is that Asics have done a terrific job distributing it, resulting in a very balanced
and stable shoe. However, you will ultimately feel a difference coming from more minimalist running shoes to these, which may result in sore calves for a period of time.
For the purpose of protection, some sacrifices had to be made with the design of these Asics shoes. One of these sacrifices is in the overall breathability of its upper. Although wearing these shoes will ensure protection against harsh weather, kicked-up debris, and rough impacts
, your feet may end up feeling a bit like they’re in an oven during the process. Fortunately, some effort has been made on the part of Asics to address some of the issues faced by this tradeoff, such as the accumulation of moisture. In addition to providing a tight fit, the Fujitrabuco 6’s sock liner helps to wick away moisture that would otherwise build up as a result of this inhibited ventilation.
These Asics trail shoes are extremely comfortable, offering an incredibly smooth ride over even the most uncomfortable of surfaces
. This is accomplished with a generous amount of padding in the midsole and outsole, debris protection with the aid of the upper’s rock plate and anti-gravel tongue, and a reliably snug fit with the aid of a sock liner and lace garage. While these features do cause the Fujitrabuco 6’s to have a weight many will find uncomfortable, measures have been taken to accommodate for this shortcoming by distributing the weight evenly.
Asics are well known for their distinctive style, which offers an interesting combination of common trends and original ideas. With these trail shoes, trademarks that this popular footwear brand are known for can be seen on full display. This includes a low-profile design standard to running shoes (without a swoosh on them), and the standard criss-crossed Asics logo. When the Gel Fujitrabuco’s style is compared to other running shoes made by the same manufacturer, there are little to no differences in style. The sole notable exception to this is a muted color palette, as opposed to the variety of neon color choices found in other Asics products.
As you may expect from a shoe designed to run up mountains, the Gel Fujitrabuco 6 is a highly durable shoe
. It will still require regular maintenance and cleaning in order to guarantee its longevity, but a well-maintained pair of these Asics trail shoes will last for years before needing to be replaced. One thing that does slightly detract from these shoes’ overall durability is the use of lighter materials in the midsole, as well as the squishier gel used in the heel. While this means they may not be as durable as other trail shoes, these are still leaps and bounds better than a common running shoe.
For these Asics trail shoes, protection is the name of the game. Essentially every aspect of the Gel Fujitrabuco 6’s design is geared towards offering excellent protection first and foremost, no matter what the cost may be. An anti-gravel tongue and moisture-wicking sock liner on the upper, A rock plate on the forefoot, and a highly cushioned
and lugged outsole result in an article of footwear that evokes images of armored trucks and tanks. Absolutely nothing is going to impact your feet when wearing these shoes, but it does come at the cost of a very high weight.
With trail shoes, experienced runners have grown to expect some sacrifices in regards to responsiveness. This is due mainly to the high weight and stiff materials that are mainstay features in ordinary trail shoe design. While it is true that the weight of the Asics Gel Fujitrabuco 6 is quite high at 11 ounces, the material is a bit more forgiving than you may expect. As a result of this, and as a result of the sock liner placed in the upper portion, a level of responsiveness is achieved that may surprise many trail runners accustomed to this style of shoe.
Part of what makes these Asics shoes so incredible in terms of support is the implementation of a gel-cushioned heel. In addition to helping support the heel when striking, but it improves your overall level of energy efficiency while running. This is possible because the specific design of this gel pocket facilitates a smooth transition into the midstance, which results in a greater degree of energy conservation. This is even more impressive when coupled with the highly durable and resistant outsole; the impressive level of stability
and traction offered by it helps to maintain support and comfort while running on even the most tumultuous of surfaces.
As a trail shoe, the Asics Gel Fujitrabuco 6 is designed to work best on non-standard running surfaces. It is possible to use these shoes on casual running terrain such as a track or grassy field, but the extra weight will feel unwieldy and less energy efficient. In order to make the most out of these shoes, runners should seek out rough trails fraught with weeds, rocks, gravel, and hard dirt. Even inclined surfaces, like the kind you would find on the side of a mountain, or harsh weather conditions, such as a rainstorm or dust storm, are no match for these shoes.
Prices can vary depending on where you look for these running shoes, but they tend toward the higher end of the spectrum. This is standard among trail shoes, thanks to the implementation of innovative technology and the sheer volume of material needed to construct each article of footwear. Because of this, there isn’t much difference in the Asics Gel Fujitrabuco 6’s price when compared to other shoes of its kind. However, thanks to the truly impressive design and construction of these shoes, the premium price is entirely justified, especially if you can hunt down a discounted pair.
In order to meet the needs of trail runners and mountain runners, the level of traction present in these shoes are second to none. This impressive feat is accomplished mainly by the outsole, which features strategically placed lugs that help to provide a stable grip on a variety of treacherous surfaces. Other ways that this shoe provides excellent traction can be found on the upper, ensuring that the shoes remain firmly fastened to your feet with the aid of a sock liner and lace garage. The end result is a shoe that not only sticks tightly to your feet but sticks tightly to the road as well.
While trail shoes are not commonly known for being very flexible, the use of lighter cushioning in the Gel Fujitrabuco 6 bucks this trend to a degree. More give can be felt during strides thanks to the slightly diminished stiffness that results from this design choice. Although these shoes still aren’t as flexible as a pair of minimalist running shoes or your standard track and field shoe, the difference is noticeable to runners who are more accustomed to the rigid midsoles of competing with trail shoe brands.
As previously mentioned, the lightweight material used for these Asics shoes’ midsoles cause the sole to feel a bit more bendy. This can be a nice feature for individuals running on smooth surfaces, but it can take away stability in more sensitive environments such as a steep slope. Fortunately, the addition of gel pockets helps to make the most of this increased flexibility, turning your foot movements into strides that are more fluid and energy-efficient. The result is an impressive compromise between flexibility and stability that really must be seen to be believed.
There is an elevation difference of 8 mm from the heel to the forefoot of these shoes. This is an interesting design decision as it bucks the common trend among trail shoes to maintain a neutral drop. Having a neutral drop on this kind of shoe helps to provide even cushioning for the entirety of the foot and helps to increase the level of stability when striking with the forefoot. The high heel drop present on these Asics trail shoes is reminiscent of a running shoe, with extra heel protection and greater emphasis on rear foot striking. This will make it easier for runners used to this kind of shoe to break in this new pair, but experienced trail runners may feel uneasy in these.
- Granite-proof tongue protecting feet from flying debris
- Lace garage protecting shoelaces from fraying or untying
- Lugs along the outsole providing additional traction on rough surfaces
- Moisture-wicking sockliner
- SoLyte EVA midsole with significantly reduced weight
- Gel cushions placed in the heel
So many interesting ideas have been realized in the design and manufacture of these trail running shoes
. Asics may be known for conventionally functional footwear, but these shoes are a real shock to the system. An ideal candidate for these shoes would be an individual who enjoys track and field events but would like to break into running in tougher conditions, like up the side of a mountain. However, for seasoned trail runners who just want a good old-fashioned mountain runner, they will probably want to pass on the Gel Fujitrabuco 6.